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Some bbl info.

JustsomedudeJustsomedude Posts: 418 Member
I kinda touched on this in another thread and figured that it might be useful info to some of you. To make a long story short, I've been building rifles of all kinds for a loooong time. Bench rest, hunting, varmint, competition, long range, etc... I've learned quite a bit by doing so and figure that I'd share my experience. First off, I prefer starting from blanks and turning them myself. This is beneficial in more than one way because I often get a stock and I'm told to make the barrel fit the inletting. Its also easier to replicate military contours if the need arises or to just do a one off contour. But the biggest reason is that I truly seek perfection and have found that 95% of the times that I check an already contoured barrel from the manufacturer, its full of run out when I spin it between centers on the lathe. Now thats not necessarily going to equate to bore straightness,  but it bugs me.. Its amazing to me how many guys finish a barrel with a lathe file or belt grinder. The second part is barrel brands. Ive found that most of your expensive brand barrel makers have terrible bore line straightness which I always check. I always check that first and one time had to send 3 (yes 3) Douglas barrels back to the manufacturer because of deviation. I've also seen this from pretty much all of the big brand, expensive makers too. And the craziest part of it all is that the best manufactured barrels that I've come across with the least issues and honestly some of the best accuracy is Green Mountain and the runner up being Kreiger. I have no idea why, or what their manufacturing process is, but they have proven to be the best of all that I've used. I honestly cringe anymore when I'm brought a Douglas or told to order one for a build. I also understand the science of the projectile leaving the bore, so most guys would argue that the straightness that im concerned over is negligible but it matters to me and I've always built really good shooters. Hopefully I put this in text as well as I thought I had it in my head 😆. If need be, I'll try and elaborate further if anyone has any questions.

Replies

  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 6,721 Senior Member
    What about betting???

    Free float or strategic pressure points???


  • SpkSpk Senior Member Posts: 3,850 Senior Member
    Pictures. I like pictures 😊
    Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience -- Mark Twain
    How easy it is to make people believe a lie, and [how] hard it is to undo that work again! -- Mark Twain

  • JustsomedudeJustsomedude Posts: 418 Member
    What about betting???

    Free float or strategic pressure points???


    I do what the customer asks, but I prefer free floating. Strategic pressure placement is usually a last ditch effort to half ass an underlying issue. Usually.
  • JustsomedudeJustsomedude Posts: 418 Member
    I should also add that there's a ton of variables that come into play in that aspect also. Bbl contour, diameter, material,  etc...
  • JustsomedudeJustsomedude Posts: 418 Member
    Best example I can think of is when I get a customers gun that they complain about accuracy so I disassemble it and start checking tolerances and specs. Set up the receiver and indicate it in the lathe and find that the receiver shoulder has .002 runout, bolt has .001 deviation on the lug mating surface and then the barrel shoulder has runout. That all adds up to inconsistencies. Add the pressure and heat and you have a gun with terrible accuracy. In some of those cases upward pressure on the barrel will "solve" the problem, momentarily.
  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 6,721 Senior Member
    Interesting. Thanks.
  • mitdr774mitdr774 Member Posts: 1,426 Senior Member
    edited May 24 #8
    I have used Adam's and Bennet, Green Mountain, NOS surplus, and soon a Douglas from the late 90s.  I have been unable to complain about performance from any of them so far.  I have more issues with factory rifle performance than anything I have had a hand in putting together, but not all factory rifles have had issues across the board.  I can usually find at least one load the rifle likes.


    A&B .35 Whelen, 250gr at 2550 fps.



    I pulled the second round of the 6.

    GM .458x1.8, 400gr at 1750 fps



    I can live with this kind of performance.  Hopefully the .358x1.71 using the 90s Douglas will perform just as well.   It wont take much for it to out perform my Ruger .350 Legend, with correct sized bullets, that's for sure.


    Based purely on personal experience, it seems to be more of an issue of the care taken during assembly than the quality of the barrel.  I have seen junk barrels shoot amazingly well and very high end barrels shoot like crap.  There were obvious differences in care taken during assembly though. 
  • Big Al1Big Al1 Senior Member Posts: 7,754 Senior Member
    I've done some barrel work in the past and decided I'd leave it to the pros!! My mentor used to do everything himself, all the custom contouring etc. But that's how he made his living!!
    As a hobbyist I left it to the pros and usually sent my actions out to get re-barreled. I never had issues with Douglas barrels, and I preferred the stepped contour of a Douglas. But, I have had good luck with McGowan barrels on a few rifles!!
    The ones I did myself did not require any contouring. I re barreled #1 rolling block in 45-70. Threaded and chambered the barrel on that one, since it a straight case it was easy to chamber. You don't even need a lathe, I ran the reamer in by hand and when the action just closed, it was head spaced. Did the same with a Sharps kit. If I remember they both had square threads so I had to grind a bit to make the threads.
  • LinefinderLinefinder Moderator Posts: 6,748 Senior Member
    I've had very good luck with Krieger, (2 Pdog rigs and 1 30BR), but strange as it sounds, I've got a 700 VLS in .223 Rem that shoots lights-out with the Rem factory barrel. I'll never get that lucky again. 

    I've had good experience with Shielen, but Krieger is my go to.

    Mike
    "Walking away seems to be a lost art form."
    N454casull
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 23,517 Senior Member
    I’ve used:
    Adams and Bennet
    Shilen Select Match
    Douglas Premium
    Green Mountain
    Match Grade Machine
    Rock Creek Barrels
    Schneider
    Lilja
    Krieger

    Of those, I like Lilja and Krieger the best. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • LinefinderLinefinder Moderator Posts: 6,748 Senior Member
    Got to correct my previous post. I meant Lilja instead of Sheilen.

    My 2 favs are Krieger and Lilja.

    Thanks for jogging my memory, Zee.

    Mike
    "Walking away seems to be a lost art form."
    N454casull
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 23,517 Senior Member
    You were the one turned me on to Lilja, I believe. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • LinefinderLinefinder Moderator Posts: 6,748 Senior Member
    After CA the memory isn't as reliable as it used to be,

    Mike
    "Walking away seems to be a lost art form."
    N454casull
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